By a nursing home injury and accident lawyer
Nursing home injuries from abuse, neglect and accidents are very common, and sadly, these injuries often go undetected. This is primarily due to the fact that nursing home residents in PA and NJ are often plagued with complex medical conditions and declining mental health which makes discovery of nursing home abuse or neglect that much harder. Many residents cannot verbalize that they have suffered abuse or neglect. Oftentimes, family members feel helpless or feel they are unable to prove that their loved ones are suffering at the hands of nursing home employees or fellow residents.
Here are three things to help you determine whether your loved one who is in a nursing home in PA or NJ is suffering abuse or neglect.
- Before your visit: check with Pennsylvania and New Jersey government agencies.
- During your visit: look for unexplained bruising, bleeding, etc.
- During your visit: look for changes in your loved one’s physical and emotional demeanor.
Before Your Visit: Check with Government Agencies
Before visiting your loved one, research the nursing home by checking with government agencies. Look for deficiencies and patterns of problems. While the information from government agencies isn’t always perfect or complete, it’s relatively accessible and will give you a general idea about the quality of care in the nursing home.
In both Pennsylvania and New Jersey, nursing homes and other long term care facilities are regulated by local state government agencies as well as federal agencies. For example, in New Jersey, nursing homes are regulated and inspected by the NJ Department of Health as well as Medicare (federal) agencies.
The information available from each government agency varies. For instance, the NJ Department of Health website does not provide specific information about violations and deficiencies. However, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Medicare websites do provide specific details including the nature of the problem and whether the nursing home rectified the issue.
If your loved one is in a nursing home in NJ and you’d like specific information about nursing home survey reports and correction plans, the law allows you to request that information in one of two ways. First, you can make a formal request with the specific nursing home. Second, you can send a written request to:
New Jersey Department of Health
P.O. Box 360, John Fitch Plaza
Trenton, New Jersey 08625-0360
If you suspect that your loved one is being abused or suffering neglect in a nursing home, please call our office for a free consultation. Our nursing home injury lawyers specialize in these kinds of cases. (215) 985-0777
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